Young music band taking Botswana by storm
by NGONIDZASHE DZIMIRI
The Metrophones, a young local band formed half a year ago, have become the answer to the question: “Can there be great live entertainment in Botswana?”
The band is versatile in many forms of live music styles, including smooth jazz, African swing, jazz and contemporary styles, pop, funk, soul and R n' B.
The 11-piece live band features a stunning line-up of vocalists, keyboardists, percussionists, drummers, live guitar and brass musicians from all over the country.
The Metrophones were born out of a social responsibility concept to see if a great live band could be created from an available crop of talented musicians, without always having to out-source big live shows and events to 'imported' performers from other countries.
“We got together as a band in early May 2011, and spent an exclusive 5 month period together practising for our debut shows which were held to wide public acclaim in September 2011 at Maitisong Theatre and the famous Botswana Craft venue,” said Esther Golakai, the manager of the Metrophones Band.
Golakai said since going out on their own in September 2011, they have been busy building up their performance repertoire and working on private shows and gigs.
“The band gets a lot of support from the corporate sector and they offer their services on a regular basis,” she said. The band recently had their first solo show at the Maitisong Arts Festival in April 2012, and is set to have another one in early September.
“We are a cover band offering our audiences a wide range of styles in a single sitting, from smooth jazz to Neo-Soul and Afro jazz as well as house,” she said.
The Metrophones are inspired by a wide range of musical influences across the board: being a band made up of so many people it’s hard to pin-point on influence. “We respect local jazz artists and look to international music icons as well, the mix of different tastes is what helps us give a fresh offering at every event it’s a good balance,” she said.
At the moment, they are working on two big projects. Their next show, which is going to be a Motown- themed event, will be held at GICC on September 7th.
The young group has been invited to perform at the first Miss Botswana UK & Ireland Pageant to be held in London on September 29th.
“It will be a great event for Miss Botswana UK as this is their first show- they have invited a whole range of Botswana performers, designers and other participants to attend,” said Golakai.